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Apr 13 / Jane

Ryan’s Quest 5k 2014

In the first week of April, my office held a raffle for several free race entries to three different 5ks within NJ. I entered the closest, and only, one that worked in my schedule was the Ryan’s Quest Dash for Dushenne 5k in Mercer County Park, April 12th. And I won, alright! Technically I’m tapering now (yay!) and they do not recommend racing during the taper, or really running any faster than race-pace. I figured I’d run by feel, if I feel good the morning of, I’ll race it and see how well I can do, then complete an additional 9 miles slow and easy to get to my scheduled 12 for the day; or if I feel eh, I’ll just use the 5k as the start of my 12 mile long run.

I was feeling good in the morning, but a little frazzled (I was headed to my parents after my long run, then out with friends in the evening, so I had to plan the night before to be out all day and I’d already forgotten some things). But the weather was BEAUTIFUL, unlike my last race, it was low 70’s and sunny: shorts and t-shirt weather! I picked up my bib and raffle tickets and turned around into Bill from PI! What a pleasant surprise! Running into him, though, meant I was racing.

We lined up near the start-line and enjoyed a fast downhill start. We headed down a paved path towards the lake and veered off onto a secondary path after the first mile marker. We hit a soggy patch in the path and I ended up in ankle-deep mud for a minute dodging a pre-teen who’d stopped in front of Bill and I. Ugh. Our fast first mile was catching up to me as we headed back towards the lake. I was passed by a co-worker and waved Bill on. We diverted in front of the marina due to a crew competition and run up the grass back to the paved path. We took the path back to where we met the main road. Half a mile to go and it was pretty much all downhill. We ran just past the start and into the finish chute.

My unofficial time is 25:05, a post-college PR. I was tired, but not tired enough. Which is great, a nice PR and I know I have the ability to do even better next time. Normally I’d beat myself up for having something left in the tank at the end and for not beating the 27 year old who outran me by 5sec; but with 9mi still to go, and a marathon in 2 weeks, I’m thrilled!

Bill and I cheered on other runners coming into the finish, including some more co-workers of mine, then headed back to the staging area for goodies and results. At the posted results, we met a recent transplant to NJ and invited her to PI. Of course, all the beautiful weather we had this weekend won’t last and it looks like Tuesday will be rainy and cold, boo! Regardless, she placed 3rd in my age group, while I was 5th (5 seconds behind 4th!) and Bill wound up being 1st in his age group (an early birthday present, Happy Birthday Bill!!)!

Bill and I after the race

Bill and I after the race

We chatted through the results and for a bit afterwards, then I was off for my additional 9 miles. It was an absolutely beautiful afternoon and I had a nice run through the park, watching the regatta some of the time.  The only downside was the awful sunburn I ended up with (sunscreen was one of the thing I forgot, ugh!).

After the run I made a quick stop at Trader Joe’s, then over to my parents. I spent the evening with Matt and Claire in Princeton. For the first time this year, we headed over to my favorite ice cream place, the Bent Spoon. Hazelnut and Chocolate Earl Gray ice cream, mmmm… It was the perfect way to end the day.


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  1. You went to the Bent Spoon!!!!! I need to go….must sample it after hearing you talk so highly of it! Congrats on your speedy 5K!
    See you in 2 weeks!

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